None of them got to witness Trevor Hoffman’s 600th career save.
Hoffman earned his major-league leading 600th career save on Tuesday night when he retired three batters in the ninth inning to preserve a 4-2 victory over St. Louis. Hoffman gave up a leadoff single to Colby Rasmus, but Rasmus was erased quickly on a double play off the bat of pinch hitter Randy Winn. Hoffman then got Aaron Miles on a grounder to Craig Counsell at short to record the historic save. (My friend Chris once said of Randy Winn: “You know how any player whose last name is Black is always white and any player whose last name is White is always black—well, that explains Randy Winn.”)
Macha, Duncan, Dickerson and the fan were all ejected, and all but Macha, by home plate umpire Bob Davidson. Seriously, Davidson tossed a fan. He was cantankerous and then some. Chris Narveson pitched seven strong innings, giving up two runs on four hits and three walks, while striking out 9, to put the Brewers in position to win. Carlos Villanueva and John Axford pitched the eighth to set the table for Hoffman’s save.
As someone who has watched every game this year, it was nice to feel a playoff like intensity for an inning—with a celebration to match. No, the Brewers are not going to make the playoffs this year. It was nice to forget that for a few minutes and cheer like crazy for Trevor Hoffman. Hoffman is easy to root for—he has handled this year with an amazing amount of class. Getting 600 was way harder than anyone could have imagined. It was hard to watch him fail. It was hard to see that sign in left field. But moments like tonight’s don’t happen often, especially in Milwaukee, so it is important to take it in and enjoy it. Relish it, even. Celebrate with a beer.
After the save, the Brewers had a nice on-field presentation for Hoffman, where Doug Melvin and Macha presented Trevor with a painting of him pitching in Miller Park. Apparently noticing Macha struggling to hold up the painting, Trevor asked Ken if the painting was heavy before rescuing him and taking it out of his hands. Macha still old, Hoffman still considerate, even after 600 saves. And that’s more saves than anyone, EVER.
Brewers 4, Cardinals 2Game played 9-7-10